(PHP 4, PHP 5, PHP 7, PHP 8)
echo — Output one or more strings
Outputs one or more expressions, with no additional newlines or spaces.
echo is not a function but a language construct.
Its arguments are a list of expressions following the
keyword, separated by commas, and not delimited by parentheses.
Unlike some other language constructs,
echo does not have
any return value, so it cannot be used in the context of an expression.
echo also has a shortcut syntax, where you can
immediately follow the opening tag with an equals sign. This syntax is available
even with the short_open_tag configuration
I have <?=$foo?> foo.
The major differences to print are that
echo accepts multiple arguments and doesn't have a return value.
One or more string expressions to output, separated by commas.
Non-string values will be coerced to strings, even when
strict_types directive is enabled.
No value is returned.
echo "echo does not require parentheses.";
// Strings can either be passed individually as multiple arguments or
// concatenated together and passed as a single argument
echo 'This ', 'string ', 'was ', 'made ', 'with multiple parameters.', "\n";
echo 'This ' . 'string ' . 'was ' . 'made ' . 'with concatenation.' . "\n";
// No newline or space is added; the below outputs "helloworld" all on one line
// Same as above
echo "hello", "world";
echo "This string spans
multiple lines. The newlines will be
output as well";
echo "This string spans\nmultiple lines. The newlines will be\noutput as well.";
// The argument can be any expression which produces a string
$foo = "example";
echo "foo is $foo"; // foo is example
$fruits = ["lemon", "orange", "banana"];
echo implode(" and ", $fruits); // lemon and orange and banana
// Non-string expressions are coerced to string, even if declare(strict_types=1) is used
echo 6 * 7; // 42
// Because echo does not behave as an expression, the following code is invalid.
($some_var) ? echo 'true' : echo 'false';
// However, the following examples will work:
($some_var) ? print 'true' : print 'false'; // print is also a construct, but
// it is a valid expression, returning 1,
// so it may be used in this context.
echo $some_var ? 'true': 'false'; // evaluating the expression first and passing it to echo
Note: Because this is a language construct and not a function, it cannot be called using variable functions.
Note: Using with parentheses
Surrounding a single argument to
echowith parentheses will not raise a syntax error, and produces syntax which looks like a normal function call. However, this can be misleading, because the parentheses are actually part of the expression being output, not part of the
// outputs "hello"
// also outputs "hello", because ("hello") is a valid expression
echo(1 + 2) * 3;
// outputs "9"; the parentheses cause 1+2 to be evaluated first, then 3*3
// the echo statement sees the whole expression as one argument
echo "hello", " world";
// outputs "hello world"
echo("hello"), (" world");
// outputs "hello world"; the parentheses are part of each expression
echo("hello", " world");
// Throws a Parse Error because ("hello", " world") is not a valid expression
Passing multiple arguments to
echo can avoid
complications arising from the precedence of the concatenation operator in
PHP. For instance, the concatenation operator has higher precedence than
the ternary operator, and prior to PHP 8.0.0 had the same precedence as addition
// Below, the expression 'Hello ' . isset($name) is evaluated first,
// and is always true, so the argument to echo is always $name
echo 'Hello ' . isset($name) ? $name : 'John Doe' . '!';
// The intended behaviour requires additional parentheses
echo 'Hello ' . (isset($name) ? $name : 'John Doe') . '!';
// In PHP prior to 8.0.0, the below outputs "2", rather than "Sum: 3"
echo 'Sum: ' . 1 + 2;
// Again, adding parentheses ensures the intended order of evaluation
echo 'Sum: ' . (1 + 2);
If multiple arguments are passed in, then parentheses will not be required to enforce precedence, because each expression is separate:
echo "Hello ", isset($name) ? $name : "John Doe", "!";
echo "Sum: ", 1 + 2;